Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Politics are taken a bit more seriously in New Hampshire. We come into the national spotlight every four years with the first in the nation primary. We also have the third largest legislative body in the world -all for tiny fly speck New Hampshire. The only way to avoid politicians is to be a hermit -and even then that's no guarantee you won't be sought out.
At the last farmers' market I found myself talking with a House Representative, a State Senator, and a former City Councilman who wants the Senator's job. I teased all of them -I'm an equal opportunity sort of guy.
One would think that political parties are a big deal in the state. The aren't as big as one would think. The largest group of voters are those who are registered as Independent. We vote, but not along party lines.
The thing that really skews the process is that Independents can vote in the primary. This is how voting in the primary goes for me. First I decide which party has more people this time around who I might want to support. I go in as an Independent but then declare a party. They hand me that ballot. I make my choices and drop it off in the box (paper ballot by the way). On the way out I stop at another desk and reestablish my Independent status. I was a declared party member for less than 15 minutes. One more thing, sometimes I declare a party so I can vote against someone. I'm just glad I'm not so mature that I can't pleasure in such childish behavior.
The large block of Independents can overwhelm the party faithful of either party. It drives the poll takers nuts.
By the way, most NH politicians are paid almost nothing. We know the value of a politician.
But seriously, we are more likely to get people who think of public service as a sacrifice and duty rather than a job.